2024 College Draft Prospects to Know

College players to watch this season!

Happy Opening Day of the 2024 college baseball season, to all those that celebrate! I hope today is filled with “attempts” at staying focused on work and thinking about some of the great baseball we will have over the next four months. I am here to aid in work procrastination, as we will dive into some of the top draft prospects across the college game for the 2024 Draft.

Every draft class has a strength. This draft specifically is stocked with impact college bats at the top. With a good mix of both hit-over-power guys, as well as some power-over-hit guys depending on what you prefer. Even the power hitters at the top have good plate awareness, not selling out for power at the sacrifice of walks or average. On the contrary, the high school and the college pitching ranks both need some dominoes to fall to see if a consensus top player pops, but there are many intriguing names who could have some helium this spring if things break right. Let’s dive into some of the names!

Be sure to head over to the Pitcher List dynasty page as well to stay up to date on the latest dynasty content.


Top 2024 College Draft Prospects


Top Fantasy Values


Nick Kurtz – 1B/OF, Wake Forest

2023 NCAA Stats: .353 AVG | .527 OBP | .784 SLG | 24 HR | 5 SBs | 50:63 K:BB

Nick Kurtz is a special hitter. His calling card is his ability to hit for power, but there is a very safe floor due to an advanced feel for the barrel and strike zone. It is very rare to see a hitter slug .784 with more walks than strikeouts at any level. Kurtz did that in the ACC facing high-level pitching on a weekly basis. He combines a 6’6″, 230 lb frame with athleticism that allows him to repeat his mechanics, and control the strike zone. His barrel is in the hitting zone for an eternity, allowing for him to use the whole field, as well as not cheat on any pitches allowing his bat to ball and plate discipline to be so advanced.

Kurtz has been a stud since his freshman season, where he hit .338 with 15 home runs, but he seems to be taking it to another level in the preseason. I was on campus during live ABs and watched him hit three home runs in just six at-bats, including one off Chase Burns, who has also had a dominant preseason. That was just the day I was there, and the reports are that he has not slowed down since. There comes a certain point in an amateur hitter’s career when they are just better than their competition. Kurtz seems to be reaching that level of skill. His combination of athleticism and advanced mechanics, allow for him to perform no matter the situation. He will make a pro org, and a fantasy owner, very happy for a long time.


Vance Honeycutt – OF, North Carolina

2023 NCAA Stats: .257 AVG | .418 OBP | .492 SLG | 12 HR | 19 SB | 51:49 K:BB

The 2023 stats for Honeycutt do not match his talent level. He battled injuries and was eventually shut down with 10 games left in the regular season. Entering this season, Vance is back healthy this spring, and reports from the early spring are that he is consistently making loud contact and showcasing the tools that made so many believe in his talent.

The only realistic comp for Honeycutt in terms of athleticism and tools is Byron Buxton. For many that may seem like a passive comp, but anyone who has followed the draft or prospects for long enough knows Buxton is the gold standard of tools. Honeycutt is a legit 80-grade defender and would compete for a Gold Glove in the MLB this upcoming season. He also features plus raw power, and plus speed that led to 25 home runs and 29 stolen bases as a rookie. From a dynasty fantasy perspective, he is going to have an impact on the game in the most ways combining his plus speed and plus power to be an early favorite for 1/1 in FYPD. Check out his power on full display below.


JJ Wetherholt- MIF, West Virginia 

2023 NCAA Stats: .449 AVG | .517 OBP | .787 SLG | 16 HR | 36 SB | 22:26 K:BB

Wetherholt combines the safety net of being the best pure hitter in the class, while also featuring above-average power and speed, making him arguably the top overall player in the draft. The ability to put the barrel to the ball will never be a question for JJ, with just 22 Ks in 55 games in 23. But what makes Wetherholt such an intriguing prospect is the developing power. Utilizing the offseason heading into 2023 to add muscle mass, the results translated immediately as he tripled his HR total from five to 16. He also hit 24 doubles in 2023, and one of the best tools to project future power is doubles. Doubles power becomes home run power with maturity and development.

If there are any question marks for such a dynamic talent it is the aggressive nature of his approach. So many hitters, like Wetherholt, who have always been able to put barrel on anything thrown, tend to be less patient at the plate. 26 walks in 55 games is less than ideal, but that will be something that will come with maturity. Assuming the power development continues to come, Wetherholt is a safe pick at the top of the draft, with the potential to grow into one of the more dynamic players.


The Safe Bets


Travis Bazzana – 2B, Oregon State

2023 NCAA Stats: .374 AVG | .500 OBP | .622 SLG | 11 HR | 36 SB | 47:59 K:BB

All Travis Bazzana does is hit. The Australian native parlayed a great 2023 regular season with the Beavers into an MVP campaign on the Cape last summer. The profile is more hit over power. But there is a combination of elite bat-to-ball with plate discipline that makes him an exciting profile. He spent much of the offseason working on his bat speed at Driveline, which could translate to an increase in power numbers, but that is never going to be a large part of his game. The power is going to be more about knowledge of the zone and approach, similar to a player like Alex Bregman, who knows how to pull the ball consistently in the air without an elite batted ball profile.

Bazzana is also a plus runner, who has had a lot of success stealing bases in college. He stole 36 bases last year at a 92.3% clip. That should continue to be a part of his game at the next level. Bazzana has a little unconventional setup at the plate but utilizes elite athleticism to be in the hitting zone for a long time and find consistent barrels. Check out his offseason hitting at Driveline.


Mike Sirota – OF, Northeastern

2023 NCAA Stats (AAA): .346 AVG | .472 OBP | .678 SLG | 18 HR | 19 SB | 49:44 K:BB

Mike Sirota has consistently risen up the board in draft circles since he stepped on campus in Boston. During his freshman season, he showcased a great ability to hit as a part-time starter, hitting .326, but lacked power only hitting four home runs. After spending an offseason focused on adding strength, those power numbers made a huge leap. He hit 18 home runs during the 2023 season. Assuming Sirota can continue that development in the power department, he can make a push for being taken at the top of the draft.

There is a lot to like about Sirota. He combines above-average speed times, with plus athleticism, to stick in center field. He is able to impact the game in all facets of the game. There are still some questions about the power translating to wood, as the power numbers have been good, not great during the summer, but he has shown consistency as a hitter and that will be his calling card.


College Version of Ohtani


Jac Caglianone – LHP/1B, Florida

2023 Hitting Stats: .323 AVG | .389 OBP | .738 SLG | 33 HR | 4 SB | 58:17 K:BB

2023 Pitching Stats: 74.2 IP | 4.34 ERA | 87:55 K:BB

Jactoni. The Shohei Ohtani of college baseball. Caglianone showcases tools on both sides of the ball that would make him a first-round talent. Not only did he lead the nation in home runs as a sophomore, but he was also the Sunday starter for the National Runner-up Florida Gators.

The calling card for Caglianone is going to be his power. He uses his massive frame to produce elite rotational power and bat speed. In the college game with metal bats, he can “mishit” balls for home runs. There are some swing-and-miss concerns, and the approach is not refined as most would hope with some chase tendencies. But the raw power is real and will carry him at the next level. Sometimes maturity allows a hitter to realize a 450 ft home run counts the same as a 380 ft home run, and with Caglianone’s present strength he can probably tone back the intent a little to make better swing decisions.

The side of his game that leaves so many evaluators intrigued is on the mound. He is a legit first-round-caliber arm with pure stuff. The 2023 season was a tale of three seasons, where he threw enough strikes at the beginning, then lost the strike zone making many wonder if he should move to the bullpen, then he finished the season on a strong note through the CWS. The reports from the fall are that he made some mechanical adjustments that not only allowed him to find the strike zone more but also reach 101 MPH from the left side. If the command improves, there is legit two-way potential at the next level. The more realistic route is as a position player. There is the chance that an org could be creative and use him as a relief pitcher and a first baseman, which would be an interesting development to watch.


High Profile Arms


Chase Burns- RHP, Wake Forest

2023 NCAA Stats (Tennessee): 72.0 IP | 4.25 ERA | 114:22 K:BB

Chase Burns has the potential to do a lot of great things this year. The decision to enter the transfer portal was one of the few “wow” moments in college baseball, and the decision to spurn every school in the nation for Wake Forest was an even larger “wow” moment. But the decision made a ton of sense. I remember thinking, “Why not Wake Forest?” when he entered the portal. Not only are they a national powerhouse, but they are the best pitching development program in the nation. Burns agreed with that sentiment, choosing the Demon Deacons over every program nationally. It seems to be paying off.

Stuff has never been the question for Burns. Neither has command. From 2022 to 2023, his ERA ballooned to 4.25 from 2.91, but that is with the underlying metrics of improving his strikeouts per nine innings, keeping the same walks per nine innings, allowing fewer home runs per nine innings, and seeing a slight uptick in hits per nine innings (7.3 to 7.5). All of this is because he was moved to the bullpen, which allowed for his stuff to play up and definitely improved his stats. Entering the 2024 season, reports are that Burns has been up to 102 MPH with life on the fastball. He is attacking hitters in the zone with MLB-ready pitches. There is a realistic chance he pushes Paul Skenes-level numbers this season and punches out 200+ hitters. Below is Burns’ statline in the last 10 innings pitched in the preseason.


Hagen Smith – LHP, Arkansas

2023 NCAA Stats: 71.2 IP | 3.64 ERA | 109:42 K:BB

Like most of the pitchers at the top of this year’s draft, Hagen Smith comes with some glaring question marks. There have been inconsistencies, that have led to him being moved to the bullpen during both his freshman and sophomore years, but the stuff is impressive. He took a step forward in 2023 improving his ERA, home runs per nine innings, and strikeouts per nine innings across the board, but the consistency of throwing strikes was still a concern. During the 2022 season, he walked 5.4 batters per nine innings, and during 2023 he walked 5.3.

The excitement surrounding Smith entering this spring is based on an uptick in stuff. His fastball has been up to 100 mph, which is going to make his already plus slider play up even more. His true future value will be determined by how well he can command his stuff. The main thing I will be looking for is not necessarily an improvement in his walks per nine innings, but an actual improvement of pitches in the strike zone. A pitcher with Smith’s stuff is going to generate a ton of chase out of the zone. Similar to Asa Lacy, we saw that at the next level that is not sustainable. For Hagen Smith to have success at the next level, he needs to fill up the zone with his dominant stuff.


Josh Hartle – LHP, Wake Forest

2023 NCAA Stats: 102.1 IP | 2.81 ERA | 140:24 K:BB

In a draft that seems to have question marks at the top of the pitching class, Hartle is the one with the most clarity. As a highly regarded freshman, Hartle struggled, pitching to a 5.30 ERA as a starter. 2023 was a huge step forward for the Demon Deacon’s ace. He walked the same amount of hitters in 2023 as 2022, while pitching 30 more innings. He also saw a massive uptick in strikeouts going from 54 in 69.2 innings pitched all the way to 140 in 102.1 innings pitched. It is impressive what Wake Forest, and pitching coach Corey Muscara, have shown in development as that took just one offseason of work.

Hartle’s fastball has more sink than life sitting in the low 90s, with a solid curveball and changeup, that he can throw for strikes. The largest change in his game was the addition of a cutter that sits in the high 80s and generates a ton of swing-and-miss. There is projectability to his frame, and imagining him adding velo, could make his profile skyrocket. He uses elite athleticism to repeat his mechanics, allowing him to flood the zone with strikes. As of now, he is more of an artist, than a powerlifter, but plus command and above-average stuff is enough to make him arguably the top pitcher in the draft.


Brody Brecht – RHP, Iowa

2023 NCAA Stats: 77.0 IP | 3.74 ERA | 109:61 K:BB

Originally a two-sport athlete, as a former wide receiver on the Iowa football team, Brecht decided to focus on baseball at the beginning of the 2023 baseball season, which does not make a ton of sense. I do not understand why anyone wouldn’t want to be a wide receiver in Iowa’s offense? But that is beside the point. Brecht made a business decision, the right one because he features two double-plus offerings. Between his fastball, which reached 104 MPH last season, and a slider that is a legit out pitch at the next level, there is a lot to like.

The questions for Brecht come from his ability to throw strikes. He walked 61 hitters in 77 innings, and that is with the understanding that with elite stuff you generate more chase. There is a lot to like about the pure stuff, but if he is not able to command it, the chances of him ending up in the bullpen are very real. Brecht reportedly took a step forward with the fastball command as he threw it in the strike zone 64.2% of the time over his last four starts. If that continues to be a trend early this spring, he is going to be at the top of a lot of organizations’ wish lists.


High Ceiling Bats


Tommy White – 3B, LSU

2023 NCAA Stats: .374 AVG| .432 OBP | .725 SLG | 24 HR | 0 SB | 41:23 K:BB

Tommy Tanks. The College World Series hero from the reigning National Champs is one of the better power bats in all of college baseball. After breaking the freshman home run record at NC State with 27, White decided to enter the transfer portal, where he landed in Baton Rogue. During that season he hit 24 more protecting Dylan Crews. His approach is mature as he uses the whole field and does a good job with two strikes. His hit tool is massively underrated, as he has plus barrel control, making contact with almost everything he swings at. But he is very aggressive as a hitter. 23 walks for a hitter with his power is extremely low.

Being able to refine his approach a little bit will help with some of the questions around White. His offensive profile is a slam dunk, with plus bat to ball combined with strength to hit for power to all fields. He is a solid defender at third base, but more realistically is a first baseman/designated hitter in pro ball.


Charlie Condon – OF, Georgia

2023 NCAA Stats: .386 AVG| .484 OBP | .800 SLG | 25 HR | 0 SB | 45:33 K:BB

An .800 SLG! That is what Charlie Condon put up as a redshirt freshman on the way to National Freshman of the Year. Condon was not a hot name coming into the 2023 season, but he left that season on everyone’s radar. He is much more power over hit, and there are question marks about the overall approach, but the power is legit. You would like to see more walks than 33 for a guy who is most like going to have to slug his way to an everyday big-league contributor, but he has only played one full season at the college level.

It will be interesting to see how pitchers adjust in their plan of attack, and how Condon counteracts those adjustments. He will most likely see more spin, especially out of the zone, in a solid not great Georgia lineup. How he handles this season will determine the excitement surrounding Condon.


Seaver King – OF/MIF, Wake Forest

2023 NCAA Stats (Wingate): .411 AVG| .457 OBP | .699 SLG | 11 HR | 13 SB | 26:13 K:BB

The mystery talent across college baseball entering this season. Seaver King enters his first season at the D1 level with a lot of hype. Coming from D2 powerhouse, Wingate, King has high expectations. Those expectations are for good reason. King hit .424/.479/.542 in 16 games on the Cape last summer, and impressed scouts with Team USA. That shows the level of talent he possesses. But it is different doing it for a full 56-game season.

King will start the season in center field for the Demon Deacons, after playing mostly middle infield in the past. This will allow him to showcase his elite athleticism and play free. Don’t be surprised if he becomes one of the better defenders in the class. There is a lot of twitch to King’s game, with a ton of bat speed. His approach is very aggressive with only 13 walks in 50 games last season. The power is more doubles than home runs, but that could change at a hitter-friendly park like Wake. Seaver King will be a player I am watching closely all season as he could push for a top-5 pick with a huge season.

Photos courtesy of Florida, Wake Forest, and West Virginia Athletics | Adapted by Aaron Polcare (@bearydoesgfx on Twitter)

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